Dr. Rick Harper

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper looks at the Florida Legislature’s attempt to eliminate Visit Florida and Enterprise Florida.

A battle is brewing in Tallahassee as state lawmakers look to dismantle both Visit Florida, which supports tourism efforts in the state, and Enterprise Florida, which offers economic incentives to businesses in Florida. In a hearing this week, the committee responsible voted in a split decision to move forward with a bill to eliminate much of the state’s economic incentives.
 

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper looks at a temporary reduction in the deficit, an unexpected drop in existing home sales and how the high cost of textbooks affects access to higher education.

This week, the Congressional Budget Office projected a slight drop in the U.S. budget deficit.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper looks at a recent uptick of economic development in the local area and a new solar project for local military facilities.

Two new upscale hotels, an Aloft and an Element, both Starwood brands, are planned downtown between 9th Avenue and Salamanca Street.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper looks at the recent rise in unemployment numbers and what they mean in the long term, why job openings have risen and what Obamacare’s repeal could mean for Florida’s economy.

Weekly applications for unemployment benefits rose by 10,000 last week. But looking at historical data, the numbers are nothing to worry about, Harper said.

 

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper looks at Florida’s 2017 economic outlook.

A recent University of Florida consumer survey found that a majority of people in the state are feeling very positive about their economic future.

“The overall index was up almost seven points to a value of 97. That’s a pretty strong increase,” Harper said. “The components that make up the index uniformly increased – from people’s perception of their possibility of financial health in the future and their perception of today’s financial health.”

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the movement to replace the Pensacola Bay Center with a new facility and how Florida and the U.S. job markets are faring after a long period of uninterrupted growth.

The Pensacola Bay Center is reaching the end of its productive lifespan and with maintenance costs rising, a group of stakeholders led by Pensacola Sports and Visit Pensacola have begun looking at replacing the building with a new multiuse facility.

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

Now that the inaugural season is in the books, the University of West Florida football program is preparing for 2017.

A dollars-and-cents study of that first year is also in the works.

The Argonauts went 5-6, tying Florida Tech and New Haven for the most wins by a first-year Division II program in the past decade. Head Coach Pete Shinnick says expectations were not solely based on the scoreboard.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the latest manufacturing numbers, the role economic incentives play in our area and why the trade deficit isn’t decreasing any time soon.

The U.S. Department of Commerce released its October report on U.S. factory orders, and the numbers were much better than expected.

“Orders are up 2.7 percent. This is the fourth month in a row that factory orders have been up,” Harper said. “We actually got an upwardly revised number for the prior month.”

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper looks at the latest ADP report on job growth, talks about potential tax cuts in the Trump administration and what those reductions could mean for Northwest Florida.

Harper said the report from the ADP, the nation’s largest payroll processor, which comes out two days before the federal statistics on jobs that are released on the first Friday of every month, yielded “surprisingly good” results.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper looks at the unexpected boost in retail sales, the underestimated Chinese/U.S. trade relationship, how uncertainty is affecting Florida’s budget, and growth on Nine Mile Road.

U.S. retail sales rose .08 percent in October, which was better than anticipated. But Harper said that there was other good news that shouldn’t be overlooked.

 

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses what the election of Donald Trump means for the economic markets, the Federal Reserve and international trade.

With Hillary Clinton favored to win the 2016 presidential election, many were caught off guard when Trump emerged victorious.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper talks about his recent economic outlook presentation to the Pensacola Rotary Club where he discussed issues that will face our next president, including interest rates, the national debt and the North American Free Trade Agreement.

With less than a week to the election, Harper spoke to the group about where the economy stands now and what we could see after all the votes are counted, particularly with the Federal Reserve and the expected interest rate hike in December.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses an unexpected rise in new home sales, explains why it may be time to reexamine the Consumer Price Index and when BP oil spill relief funds could start funding projects in the area.

Beating expectations, new home sales rose 3.1 percent in September and Harper said that the increase shows conflicting signs in the home sale market.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses an unexpected drop in housing starts in September and what it means for the larger economic landscape. Also, the SBDC released its first Florida Small Business Survey.

Housing starts for September were down 9 percent from August and down 12 percent from September 2015, but Harper said digging deeper into the numbers from the Commerce Department’s monthly report reveals a really mixed bag.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses a new Pew Research Center that looks at the state of American jobs. He also talked about the ITEN Wired summit, an annual networking and educational conference for tech and knowledge-based industries.

The study, which spans 1980-2015, finds that jobs that require higher levels of skill are growing faster than those that require fewer skills.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the 20th annual Gulf Power Economic Symposium held earlier this week in Panama City.

More than 500 people attended the sold-out event. Harper said the event’s reputation as a world-class symposium has grown along with its attendance.

“It’s really grown in stature around the region,” Harper said. “It’s a great networking event with a lot of great speakers, and I thought this year’s symposium was particularly good.”

 

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the reasons that the Federal Reserve continues to hold interest rates and what tools they have at their disposal to normalize the economy.

 

After last week’s announcement that the Federal Reserve would once again hold interest rates, many were left wondering why, particularly when low interest rates hurt those trying to save.

 

 

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper talks about the Federal Reserve once again holding interest rates despite projections that an increase was coming in September.

 

Most observers had anticipated that the Fed would raise rates by 0.25 percent, and many were caught off guard by their decision.

 

“The Federal Open Market Committee held firm at the existing low interest rates,” Harper said. “We haven’t had an increase since December 2015.”

 

 

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the new Census Bureau report on the economic progress of American families released by the White House this week.

 

Among the findings in the report was the fact that household income grew at the fastest rate on record in 2015.

 

“It was a great report,” Harper said. “We’ve been tracking statistics on median household income adjusted for inflation. Economists call that real median household income.”

 

 

  In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper talks about the Pensacola Young Professionals’ annual Quality of Life survey and what the results reveal about perceptions of the area’s economy and the Port of Pensacola.

 

The PYP Quality of Life survey was released this week. Conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling and Research, 800 respondents were surveyed with the largest response group being those 65 and older, followed by those who were 55-64 and Harper says there weren’t big surprises in the basic findings.

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